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Diary

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Petronella Wyatt

20 April 2013

One of Lady Thatcher’s least publicised qualities, which raised her above any  other politician I have known, was the complete absence of schadenfreude or triumphalism. In 1992, I was fortunate… Read more

Barry Humphries

13 April 2013

Whenever feminists have complained in my presence about neglect of female high-achievers, other than rock singers and courtesans, I always like to mention brilliant Margaret Thatcher. It always makes them… Read more

Matt Ridley

6 April 2013

We’ve discovered that we own an island. But dreams of independence and tax-havenry evaporate when we try to picnic there on Easter Sunday: we watch it submerge slowly beneath the… Read more

Sarah Vine

30 March 2013

After £4 million of taxpayer’s money and eight months of celebrity hand-wringing (bar a few notable and worthy exceptions), democracy has finally triumphed: Leveson has got the press where many… Read more

Trevor Kavanagh

23 March 2013

I learned on Wednesday that a row is exploding over freedom of the press … in Australia. Surely some mistake. Australia is refreshingly open and its newspapers are free to… Read more

Quentin Letts

16 March 2013

The week starts with a bang — literally — when my 1986 Land-Rover explodes, mid-gear change: CLANK and the exhaust pipe burps blue smoke. The old girl rolls to a… Read more

A.C. Grayling

9 March 2013

My friend and colleague Roy Brown has just sent me the draft of a statement he will submit to the UN Human Rights Council this spring, on behalf of the… Read more

A patrol of allied forces in Northern Burma in 1944. Image: Getty

Griff Rhys Jones

2 March 2013

Burma, My Father and the Forgotten Army, with Griff Rhys Jones, is on BBC2 at 9pm on Sunday, 7th July. I have spent a week with old, old men, interviewing… Read more

Justin Webb

23 February 2013

Waiting for a match to begin at the gloriously situated Recreation Ground — home of Bath Rugby — I take a moment from shouting ‘Come on you Bath’ at the… Read more

A woman eats rice as another reads a boo

William Dalrymple

16 February 2013

The Jaipur Literature Festival, which I help to direct, has in just six years grown like some monster from an Indian epic. Each year it doubles in size and we… Read more

Piers Paul Read

9 February 2013

In a recent exchange of emails, my Member of Parliament, Mr Andy Slaughter, told me he intended to vote in favour of same-sex marriage. No doubt by now he has… Read more

Simon Barnes

2 February 2013

It’s a rum go, working in sport professionally. Your business is everybody else’s fun; their frivolity is your seriousness. Still, at least I was able to watch the Australian Open… Read more

William Shawcross

26 January 2013

Kofi Annan has just been in town for an evening organised by The Spectator. The 800 seats at the Cadogan Hall could have been sold twice over; the former UN… Read more

Christopher Caldwell

19 January 2013

Washington DC: My elegant and sociable mother-in-law received an email this week warning that, should she wander on to her balcony to smoke on Monday, somebody might shoot her. The Secret… Read more

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Bruce Anderson

12 January 2013

There is a lesson to be learned from the Francis Report into the NHS in Mid-Staffordshire, and from the police force’s current travails. Nigel Lawson once said that the NHS… Read more

Joanna Kavenna

5 January 2013

I am re-reading D.H. Lawrence’s Sea and Sardinia. The opening line runs: ‘Comes over one an absolute necessity to move…’ He expands on the dilemma (I paraphrase): you are afflicted… Read more

George Carey

29 December 2012

Well, what a year it has been. Another one full of financial doom and gloom. I’ve never known such a prolonged period of anxiety and pessimism in my lifetime. With… Read more

Photo: Getty Images

Pippa Middleton

15 December 2012

I have been much teased for my book, Celebrate: A Year Of British Festivities For Families And Friends. Lots of journalists are saying that my advice is glaringly obvious. A… Read more

Susan Hill

8 December 2012

Finding an outfit for a wedding is a doddle compared with finding one for an investiture and I wonder how sensible it was to buy my hat first. I love… Read more

Nadine Dorries

1 December 2012

As I returned to the House of Commons, it was clear I had swapped one jungle for another. For the last few weeks I have been in Australia filming I’m… Read more

Ben Goldsmith

24 November 2012

I once bred a racehorse, half-owned by my mother, born at my mother-in-law’s farm in Suffolk and named ‘Green Moon’ by my daughter. He won a race or two but… Read more

Tom Bower

17 November 2012

I have just returned from sunny Los Angeles, visiting Simon Cowell, the subject of my most recent biography. He told me about a visit by Cheryl Cole to his amazing house in… Read more

Colin Thubron

10 November 2012

People constantly ask travel writers: where are you going next? They hope to hear about a camel-party in Mongolia. But last week I had to answer blandly: Italy. I travelled… Read more

Conrad Black

3 November 2012

Air Canada has outwitted the superstorm and I am about to return to Canada after my nine-day stay in London following an absence of seven years, and nine years since… Read more

Nick Robinson

27 October 2012

I am standing in the courtyard of HMP Wormwood Scrubs with the Prime Minister. He’s there, or so I read, to convince the papers that his approach to law and… Read more